The Bouraq is a flying creature with an animal body and a human head, which is told to have carried the Prophet Mohamed from the Mecca to Jerusalem in the night to meet Jesus and Moses before returning to the Mecca and then to heaven during the episode known as Isra and Miraj (meaning respectively in Arab ‘night-time journey’ and ‘ascension’.
A common motif in East Java, glass paintings with Bouraq in Madura and among migrant Madurese communities are often used to protect from evil. Similar paintings can also be found in other parts of Java and Arab countries.
The Bouraq is a motif from the Middle East that arrived in Indonesia through calendars and other printed material by people traveling from there. It has, however, become contextualized with local attributes. In this painting (as in most Bouraq paintings from Madura/East Java), the local elements are the Indonesian flag on the Bouraq’s head and the Masjid Agung As-Syuhada in Pamekasan, Madura as background.